I know the world shouldn’t be seen as black and white, that there are a multitude of greys and colours but I really thought that when it came to Monarchism and republicanism you were either one or the other or simply happy with the status quo. Not so it seems, particularly if you’re a republican where hypocrisy is policy.
Of course some of the biggest perpetrators of such hypocrisy are republican politicians. For these lot it goes a little like this; work for the Crown, swear an Oath to it but then work against it. In Australia, two such republicans have made the broadsheets recently; former NSW Premier Bob Carr and the Federal Immigration Minister Amanda Vanstone.
Carr’s is the most ironic. After a decade as premier of New South Wales Carr put considerable effort into deposing The Queen. Royal Coat of Arms were torn down or chiselled away from buildings, the Oath of Allegiance was removed from public office – he couldn’t even get the states education of transport systems working but Carr’s government even found time to pass legislation renaming Crown Land to State Land! Some mighty changes for a little man, but he proved his worth this week. No longer holding office, having retired out of fear of losing the next election, he is not entitled to any titles. He’s no longer ‘The Honourable’, but not being able to stick to his Oath we can only speculate that he never was. But of course, his ego feels that ‘The Honourable’ is warranted so Carr has written to our Queen seeking permission to retain the title. Professor David Flint notably points out that ‘The Honourable’ is actually an Imperial title. Carr’s hypocrisy knows no bounds.
But if Carr has one thing going for him, he puts considerable time between acts of hypocrisy. Amanda Vanstone has no such finesse.At a recent speech she made to a meeting of Liberal Party members in Victoria, Vanstone attempted to reignite the DOA republican debate in Australia. (Given her dismal performance as Immigration Minister she obviously needs to talk about anything else but her proven inabilities). But Vanstone had a few words of caution to her republican chums about the debate;
She blamed the failure of the referendum in part on a "politically naive" campaign rubbishing the monarchy, which she said was no way to conciliate, let alone persuade anyone.Of course to prove her worth Vanstone soon opened her mouth: within minutes the ‘Two Tonne Tesse’ had referred to our Queen as “sweaty Betty”! “Some of the guests wished she'd taken her own good advice. Others just walked out.”
In Vanstone and Carr we find two hypocritical politicians, but another hypocrite made headlines in Australia this week. Media ‘personality’ and AFL commentator Eddie McGuire. McGuire’s actions aren’t anywhere as notable as the formerly mentioned politicians but wreaked of hypocrisy all the same. This week McGuire was fortunate enough to be awarded an Order of Australia. The Order of Australia is Australia’s Royal Order, the Queen of Australia is patron and recipients are presented with their award by the Governor on behalf of the Queen. Of course, McGuire didn’t see his receiving of the award as an act of hypocrisy, but just another chance to get his mug in the papers.
AND WHEREAS a defeat for monarchy and for the people in any one Realm, is a defeat for monarchy and for all our peoples in all our Realms, we do hereby mutually proclaim therefore that any further acts of disloyalty carried out against our peoples as represented by their Sovereign, or any further encroachment by the political elite on their residual powers of State, or any further attempts to undermine the legitimacy, independence and dignity of their office, shall no longer be tolerated with gradualist abandonment, but fought vigilantly and honourably with dutiful obligation, bound by our undying affection, loyal devotion and true allegiance to Her Majesty, Queen Elizabeth II, Her Heirs and Successors.
WHEREAS by the law and ancient usage of this Realm, the Kings and Queens thereof have taken a solemn oath upon the Evangelists at their respective coronations, to maintain the statutes, laws, and customs of the said Realm, and all the people and inhabitants thereof, in their spiritual and civil rights and properties: but forasmuch as the oath itself on such occasion administered, hath heretofore been framed in doubtful words and expressions, with relation to ancient laws and constitutions at this time unknown: to the end therefore that one uniform oath may be in all times to come taken by the Kings and Queens of this Realm, and to them respectively administered at the times of their and every of their coronation: may it please your Majesties that it may be enacted:
II. And be it enacted by the King's and Queen's most excellent majesties, by and with the advice and consent of the Lords Spiritual and Temporal, and the Commons, in this present Parliament assembled, and by the authority of the same, That the oath herein mentioned, and hereafter expressed, shall and may be administered to their most excellent majesties King William and Queen Mary (whom God long preserve) at the time of their coronation, in the presence of all persons that shall be then and there present at the solemnizing thereof, by the Archbishop of Canterbury, or the Archbishop of York, or either of them, or any other bishop of this Realm, whom the King's majesty shall thereunto appoint, and who shall be hereby thereunto respectively authorized; which oath followeth, and shall be administered in this manner; that is to say,
III. [Inserting for Section III of the Act the 1689 oath taken by Her Majesty The Queen on Tuesday, 2 June 1953 amid great public rejoicing]
Archbishop: Madam, is your Majesty willing to take the Oath?
The Queen: I am willing.
Archbishop: Will you solemnly promise and swear to govern the Peoples of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, the Union of South Africa, Pakistan, and Ceylon, and of your Possessions and the other Territories to any of them belonging or pertaining, according to their respective laws and customs?
The Queen: I solemnly promise so to do.
Archbishop: Will you to your power cause Law and Justice, in Mercy, to be executed in all your judgements?
The Queen: I will.
Archbishop: Will you to the utmost of your power maintain the Laws of God and the true profession of the Gospel? Will you to the utmost of your power maintain in the United Kingdom the Protestant Reformed Religion established by law? Will you maintain and preserve inviolably the settlement of the Church of England, and the doctrine, worship, discipline, and government thereof, as by law established in England? And will you preserve unto the Bishops and Clergy of England, and to the Churches there committed to their charge, all such rights and privileges, as by law do or shall appertain to them or any of them?
The Queen: All this I promise to do.
Then the Queen arising out of her Chair, supported as before, the Sword of State being carried before her, shall go to the Altar, and make her solemn Oath in the sight of all the people to observe the premisses: laying her right hand upon the Holy Gospel in the great Bible (which was before carried in the procession and is now brought from the Altar by the Arch-bishop, and tendered to her as she kneels upon the steps), and saying these words:
The Queen: The things which I have here before promised, I will perform and keep. So help me God.
IV. And be it enacted, That the said oath shall be in like manner administered to every King and Queen, who shall succeed to the imperial crown of this Realm, at their respective coronations, by one of the archbishops or bishops of this Realm of England, for the time being, to be thereunto appointed by such King or Queen respectively, and in the presence of all persons that shall be attending, assisting, or otherwise present at such their respective coronations; any law, statute, or usage to the contrary notwithstanding.
Supreme Order of Christ (Pontifical) Order of the Golden Spur (Pontifical) Order of Pius IX (Pontifical) Order of St. Gregory the Great (Pontifical) Order of St. Sylvester Pope (Pontifical) Sovereign Order of Malta (Protected) Order of the Holy Sepulchre (Protected) Sacred Order of St. George (Papal Bull) Order of Santiago (Papal Bull) Order of Calatrava (Papal Bull) Order of Alcantara (Papal Bull) Order of Montesa (Papal Bull) Order of St. Stephen (Papal Bull) Bavarian Order of St. George (Papal Bull) Order of the Holy Annunciation (Collar Order) Order of the Golden Fleece (Collar Order) Order of the Holy Spirit (Collar Order) Order of St. Michael (Collar Order) Order of St. Januarius (Collar Order) Order of the Holy Virgin Mary (Teutonic Order)
Order of the Garter (1348) Order of the Thistle (1687) Order of the Bath (1725) Order of St. Patrick (1783-1934) Royal Guelphic Order (1815-1837) Order of St. Michael & St. George (1818) Order of British India (1837-1947) Indian Order of Merit (1837-1947) Order of the Star of India (1861-1947) Royal Order of Victoria & Albert (1862-1901) Order of the Indian Empire (1877-1947) Order of the Crown of India (1878-1947) Distinguished Service Order (1886) Royal Victorian Order (1896) Order of Merit (1902) Imperial Service Order (1902-1993) Order of the British Empire (1917) Order of the Companions of Honour (1917) Order of Burma (1940-1948)